Waze Announces New Data Exchange Program

November 26, 2014

Waze, a widely used community driven navigation app, has announced that they will be participating in a data-sharing program targeted to reduce the dreaded bumper-to-bumper vehicular traffic we all inevitably endure. Boston has been chosen as one of the pilot cities along with cities like Rio de Janeiro, Barcelona, Tel Aviv, and San Jose.

The government sponsored partnership, called “Connected Citizens”, will gather the Google-owned app’s information in order to improve traffic conditions by informing users of traffic, construction, and road closures. Waze will share real-time anonymized traffic data with governmental agencies and will receive information on public projects in return.

There is always a large amount of concern by the public about privacy when it comes to real-time crowd-sourcing; especially after information had leaked about GPS manufacturer TomTom selling its customers’ personal information. Di-Ann Eisnor, Head of Global Partnerships at Waze, stated that privacy will not be an issue since the company requires the pilot program’s community to comply with Waze’s mission to increase traffic-based functionality throughout the city.

Is this a step towards a more efficient city in terms of traffic? Do you feel reluctant to continue using Waze as it becomes a public, government-shared platform?

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